My name is Aliye Aydin, and I help home cooks create more flavorful meals through incorporating herbs and spices into their dishes. A Good Carrot offers Mediterranean meal plan subscriptions, private cooking classes, personal chef services, and a blog filled with easy wholesome recipes.
I believe home-cooked meals make us healthier and happier. I was raised Long Beach, California by my American mother and Turkish father, eating hamburgers for dinner one night and lentil soup the next. These early taste memories inform my way of cooking and continuous quest for flavors from around the world. I love to travel and explore culture and identity in the context of food and cooking.
I was diagnosed with an autoimmune kidney disease at age 15, and told to change how I was eating, I started reading cookbooks, devouring food TV shows, and testing my new-found skills on my family by preparing dinner after coming home from school. Twenty-five years later, and living free of kidney disease, I know deeply the ability of food to heal the body.
I created and managed a produce home-delivery business, beachgreens, in Long Beach for 8 years. I shopped weekly at the Santa Monica Farmers’ market, which deepened my understanding of responsible farming and the incredible flavors of produce, and created life-long relationships with some of California’s best farmers. I studied nutrition at UC Berkeley and attended the whole-foods-based culinary school Natural Gourmet Institute in New York. I harvested coffee for a season on Kuaiwi Farm in Kona, Hawaii, and attended Quillasascut Farm School in Rice, Washington. I worked at Carmelita restaurant in Seattle, for the Tom Douglas catering team in Seattle, and in 2017 co-hosted pop-up dinners in Long Beach and Brooklyn with chef Khanh Hoang. I have also been involved in urban agriculture, serving as a director for Long Beach Organic and I volunteer at Farm Lot 59.
I spend my free time with my family, my partner Andrew and our daughter, cooking up pizzas in the wood-burning clay oven we built in our backyard last summer. When not cooking I am at flamenco dance class.